If the arduous but exact researches of this extraordinary man have not discovered a new world, they have discovered seas unnavigated and unknown before. They have made us acquainted with islands, people and productions, of which we had no conception. And if he has not been so fortunate as Americus to give his name to a continent, his pretensions to such a distinction remain unrivalled; and he will be revered, while there remains a page of his own modest account of his voyages, and as long as mariners and geographers shall be instructed, by his new map of the southern hemisphere, to trace the various courses and discoveries he has made.
If public services merit public acknowledgments; if the man who adorned and raised the fame of his country is deserving of honours, then Captain Cook deserves to have a monument raised to his memory, by a generous and grateful nation.
Virtutis uberrimum alimentum est
VAL. MAXIMUS, lib. ii. cap. 6.
THE PACIFIC OCEAN.
TRANSACTIONS FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE VOYAGE TILL OUR DEPARTURE FROM NEW ZEALAND.
Various Preparations for the Voyage.—Omais Behaviour on embarking.—Observations for determining the Longitude of Sheerness, and the North Foreland.—Passage of the Resolution from Deptford to Plymouth.—Employments there.—Complements of the Crews of both Ships, and Names of the Officers.—Observations to fix the Longitude of Plymouth.—Departure of the Resolution.
Having, on the 9th day of February, 1776, received a commission to command his majesty’s sloop the Resolution, I went on board the next day, hoisted the pendant, and began to enter men. At the same time, the Discovery, of three hundred tons burthen, was purchased into the service, and the command of her given to Captain Clerke, who had been my second lieutenant on board the Resolution, in my second voyage round the world, from which we had lately returned.
These two ships were, at this time, in the dock at Deptford, under the hands of the shipwrights; being ordered to be equipped to make farther discoveries in the Pacific Ocean, under my direction.
On the 9th of March, the Resolution was hauled out of dock into the river; where we completed her rigging, and took on board the stores and provisions requisite for a voyage of such duration. Both ships, indeed, were supplied with as much of every necessary article as we could conveniently stow, and with the best of every kind that could be procured. And, besides this, every thing that had been found, by the experience acquired during our former extensive voyages, to be of any utility in preserving the health of seamen, was supplied in abundance.
It was our intention to have sailed to Long Reach on the 6th of May, when a pilot came on board to carry us thither; but it was the 29th before the wind would permit us to move, and the 30th before we arrived at that station, where our artillery, powder, shot, and other ordnance stores were received.